Spaceships Panic Orbit


Spaceships Panic Orbit at Nutstock II, June 21, 2003, Vienna, VA. From left, Many Spaceships, 36, DJ Panic.

Spaceships Panic Orbit formed in April 2001 to explore the textural and sonic possibilities of an unique combination of electronic and acoustic sound sources and a variety of sound production approaches. The group is comprised of Many Spaceships on reeds and keyboards, PJ Brownlee (Special Orbit) on laptop electronics and keyboards, Sam Lohman (36) on acoustic drums and electronics, and Jeff Bagato (DJ Panic) performing a musical instrument of his own invention: electronic sounds triggered by scraping a vinyl LP with a small hacksaw. Spaceships Panic Orbit's music brings together the aesthetics of several contemporary avant garde musics, including electronica, free jazz and free improvisation, power electronics or industrial music, and avant garde rock. In Fall 2002, Spaceships Panic Orbit released their debut recording, "That Carb in the Circuit Night" as a limited edition CDR on the Nut Music label (

 Each member of the group has performed solo or as a member of other projects. Spaceships also performs and records with New York City-based avant garde rock quartet Hat City Intuitive, whose recordings on the Crank Automotive and Superlux labels have been well-received in the alternative press; Byron Coley included HCI's "They Must Be Clapping...For Me" in his years best list published in Village Voice's Pazz and Jop survey for 2002. Brownlee has recorded and performed solo as Glow Transistor and Special Orbit, and makes video with the Dang Gang collective. A PhD candidate in American Studies at George Washington University, Brownlee is currently in residence as a McNeil Dissertation Fellow at Winterthur Museum, Library and Garden in Delaware. Bagato has performed solo as DJ Panic, "sawing" LPs to produce freely improvised electronic music. DJ Panic has released two documents: the Dead Record double 12" (2001) comprised of two "scratched" LPs in a handmade sleeve, and the "Disques Combats" CDR (2003) in a handmade package including a "scratched" record, linoleum block print, inserts, and notes. Since 1989, Bagato has edited and published Mole magazine, which documents underground music and outsider art, and has contributed music criticism and features articles to The Washington Post, Washington CityPaper, Utne Reader, Factsheet 5, Pulse!, Option, and numerous small press magazines. Lohman played drums in the Osaka, Japan, based rock-trio Nimrod (recordings on Bron and Scratchie labels) and was co-founder of the Japan Overseas record label. In Osaka, Lohman developed his "electric drum" solo project called 36, gigging in Japanese power electronics at Bears and other clubs. Now based in Alexandria, Virginia, Lohman recently completed a west coast tour with legendary Stooges saxophonist Steve McKay and records for Portland's Radon records.

Spaceships Panic Orbit has performed numerous shows over the past year, including the Sonic Circuits Festival, and shows at DCAC and Galaxy Hut with Et At It, at Montgomery College Planetarium, Decatur Blue gallery, WMUC-FM in College Park, MD, and the Red Room in Baltimore, MD. See our Show Log for more information. Upcoming show information is also available.

contact the group:

Jeff Bagato
Panic Research Agency
P.O. Box 2482
Merrifield, VA 22116

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